John Pugh and his wife Jessica Robinson started the House of Swank in a tiny 2 bedroom apartment in Raleigh NC in 2011. John was playing music gigs around town with his world famous 3 string lunchbox guitar called the "Fritocaster", and decided he needed some merch to sell. He couldn't find anything he liked, so being the DIY type, he designed and printed 5 shirts and took them to shows. Sold them. Made 10 more. Sold them. Added some stickers and can coolers. And on and on it went...
Over the years, we set up at 100's of pop up markets and festivals around the state, including Merlefest, International Bluegrass Music Association festival, NC State Fair, and dozens of small farmers and maker markets. Those festivals and markets were really where we cut our teeth and got going.
We now have our retail space in beautiful downtown Raleigh NC, and sell in person, wholesale, custom orders, and still set up at our favorite festivals. Everything we sell is screen printed or made right here at our shop.
We are proud to be visible members our community, and are have supported a number of local charities and events. These include the Helping Hand Mission, LGBT Center of Raleigh, Planned Parenthood, Coats for Kids, and many more.
We now have 2 young sons and an awesome staff. Can't say that life isn't interesting. But it all started with those 5 shirts and that Fritocaster.
All the best